President Clinton Unveils Green Street Light Plan in L.A.
Former President Bill Clinton, in Los Angeles on Monday, unveiled what is being called the largest-ever LED lighting project undertaken by a city.
Under the plan, the city will retrofit 140,000 of its residential street lights with LEDs –or light-emitting diodes– which is expected to ultimately save the city $10 million a year in energy costs.
“Greening is the future of Los Angeles,” Clinton told a group of 100 invited guests at the City Hall Rotunda. “This partnership is a tremendous example of how cities can cut costs, while also make a significant impact in the fight against climate change,” Clinton said.
The $57 million project, a partnership between the Clinton Climate Initiative and the City of Los Angeles, will reduce CO2 emissions by 40,500 tons per year – the equivalent of taking 6,700 cars off the road.
“With the green street light program, we are lighting the way to a greener LA,” Mayor Villaraigosa said. Reducing LA’s contribution to global warming will bring multiple benefits to Angelenos; we’ll save money on energy costs and reduce our dependence on fossil fuels.”
Currently, the City’s 140,000 street lights use 168 gigawatt hours of electricity at an annual cost of $15 million, emitting 120,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide.
“In America, as a whole, there are almost 35-million street lights,” said Clinton. “OK? If every city followed your lead, every major city — do you know what would happen? We would save having to build two and a half coal-fired power plants.”
In August 2006, the William J. Clinton Foundation launched the Clinton Climate Initiative (CCI) to make a difference in the fight against climate change in practical, measurable and significant ways.
The former President hopes that this project will be an example for not just the country, but the entire world to follow.
“The Chinese and the Indians and the Thais and the Indonesians are not going to get serious about this unless we can prove that it’s good business,” Clinton said. “If the world decides tomorrow to change the way it uses energy, it would create more jobs in more places than anywhere in human history. . . But we have to change the mind-set . . . that we can’t do it without hurting the economy.”